Spring Clean-Up Tips

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by Katie Lamb, Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit

Finally, spring is here! When it comes to cleaning up the cottage, garage or shed be prepared. You may find small accumulations of mouse, bird, raccoon, or bat droppings. These droppings may have harmful micro-organisms that are released into the air in the dust as you clean up.

Prior to cleaning up:

  • Open windows and doors for ventilation for about 30 minutes before your begin cleaning.
  • Wear disposable gloves and a face mask to protect from breathing in dust and droppings.
  • Wet down areas where droppings have been left with a solution of 1 part bleach to 9 parts water.
  • Shovel the wet droppings and dispose of the cleaning cloths into a garbage bag and seal the bag.
  • Wash your hands well after you have finished.
  • Some droppings may require extra special precautions or help from a professional.

Cleaning up around the yard, including trimming brush, will help reduce tick and mosquito breeding grounds. These pests live close to their breeding sites and can carry disease. The following actions will help control these pesky biters:

  • Wear protective equipment that will protect you from insect bites and rashes from annoying weeds.
  • Remove dead brush and cut down long grass.
  • Empty and remove containers that hold stagnant water such as old tires, swimming pool covers, clogged gutters, unused toys or vehicles.
  • Mow the grass and trim the ditches regularly. Mowing the ditch helps control the growth of wild parsnip. Keeping the plant mowed will prevent the plant from flowering and spreading its seeds.
  • Check yourself for ticks after your work is complete.

A thorough spring clean-up can help you enjoy outdoor activities all season long by removing conditions that are favourable for unwanted pests that may cause discomfort and disease.

For more information check our Home Health and Safety section of our website. or call 1-800-660-5853 or 613-345- 5685. You can also connect with us on Facebook and Twitter @LGLHealthUnit for important public health updates.

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